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What is a Thai Chair massage?

Thai Chair massage is an adaption of Traditional Thai massage techniques for recipients seated in a chair.

Thai Chair massage began in the 1980s as a hybrid of Traditional Thai massage. Since then, Thai Chair massage has become a sought-after treatment modality used within companies and offices, but also in spas, health salons, shopping malls or airports to get some quick stress relief or to fill in slack time.

In a Thai Chair massage session, practitioners have their recipients sit in a portable massage chair. Typically, the focus of the massage is the back of the recipient and the shoulders, neck, head, arms and hands. Sessions are usually short, about fifteen minutes to half an hour. And there is no oil with this massage, as recipients remain fully clothed during the session.

Thai Massage done on a chair is not a new modality. For instance, Thai Foot Reflexology typically has the client sitting on a chair, and the sessions often include the legs, neck, head and shoulders. However, the chairs used in Thailand are more like sofa-like chairs and not the typical portable massage chairs used in the West.

A Thai Head, Neck and Shoulder massage also has a recipient sitting in a chair. This upper body massage is available virtually everywhere in Thailand, notably on the streets, markets, and malls.

Nevertheless, Thai Chair massage given on a portable massage chair is rare in Thailand. And training is even less common as only a few Thai Massage schools in Thailand offer Thai Chair Massage courses and workshops. However, Thai Chair Massage training classes in the West are much more common.

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